When working with doctors I find a lot of them are wondering why they can’t bring in new patients. So they go out and try marketing and advertising techniques. They try sending mailers, putting ads in newspapers, and sponsoring events. Then they sit back and wonder why no one is coming to their practice.
What they don’t realize is that you must have these two things in order before going out and proactively looking for new patients.
1. Your Website – Many health care professionals know that a website is important but they normally rush through or cut corners on this step. Trying to pinch pennies in hope of saving a couple dollars by either doing it themselves or paying the cheapest designer they can find.
I like to use the analogy of the car in this situation. Any car can get you from point A to point B, but when someone buys a Ferrari (An expensive exotic sports car) they purchase it not because they need to get from point A to point B. They purchase a Ferrari because of the experience and what it says about the person who purchased it. When someone sees a person driving a Ferrari they think, “Hey that person knows what they are doing and are professional.”
The same goes for your practices website. Take these websites for example – http://www.pinskylickstein.com and http://www.drbucky.com . When you look at these websites they look professional and a patient is more likely to trust the surgeon because clearly “they know what they are doing and are professional”. Yes it may cost more to get a website like this, and you may want to cut corners, but this is one of those situations where you get what you pay for. Be careful not to cut corners on this step.
2. Search Engine Optimization – Once you have a beautiful website you need to start driving traffic to it. Good thing is people are looking for you! You need to be ranking your website for keywords that are relevant to your practice. Which means if you are a dentist you should be ranking for the keywords “Dentist Your Towns Name” and for all the towns and cities within a 20 mile radius around your office. Some people say they don’t have the money for an agency to do SEO but what they don’t realize is that SEO has a higher return on investment then mailings. Simply because the patient is looking for you instead of you mailing them and trying to convince them to come to your practice. So try to take some of your budget from other areas and put it into SEO. I guarantee you’ll see better results, but only if your website looks great!
You may already be ranking for the keywords that you should be and that’s great, but you maybe losing the patients because your website doesn’t look great.
Again this is not something where you should cut corners, or should be doing it yourself. I have seen so many doctors get their website penalized by Google because they did the SEO themselves or had a poor SEO agency do it, because they wanted to go with the cheep option. Learn more about SEO here – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_engine_optimization
Overall you need to have these two things in place if you truly want to convert patients to your practice. Many health care professionals over look these steps or cut corners and suffer because of it. Don’t become one of those people.